Compiled by: Jack Foley
THE critics in America were particularly unkind to Meg Ryan's
latest, which finds the actress in more serious territory, and
In The Cut opened on the same day in both the UK and the US and
while British critics were divided over the merits of Jane Campion's
sexually explicit thriller (which we loved, by the way), the view
from across the pond was one of derision.
Entertainment Weekly led the way, awarding it an F, and
dismissing it as 'a dreadfully inert late-night cable movie'.
While the Hollywood Reporter described it as 'erotically
charged but ultimately disappointing'.
LA Weekly felt that it 'suffers from a fatal emotional
and erotic imbalance', while the Arizona Daily Star asked:
"Meg Ryan took her shirt off for this?"
Worse still, was Salon.com, which wrote that 'In the Cut
isn't just a movie about decapitation; it's a decapitated movie.
It has no idea where its head is at'.
While Reel Views stated that 'this is a bad movie, and
no amount of erotic content can obscure that simple truth'.
The New York Times referred to it as 'a disjointed, sometimes
fascinating melange of moods, associations and effects'.
While the Philadelphia Inquirer concluded that it was
'by no means a disaster, but neither is it the wholly satisfying,
sexy suspenser that was Klute'.
On a more positive note, the Chicago Tribune stated that
'Campion impudently sabotages her star's history, and Ryan, joining
the plot, makes Frannie come alive, looking as provocatively out
of place as Diane Keaton did playing the nymphomaniac teacher
in the sexual hell of 1977's Looking for Mr. Goodbar'.
And the San Francisco Chronicle described it as 'unquestionably
the most ambitious and important film to come along in months'.
Still on the good vibe, the National Post stated that
'while it's difficult to empathize with these characters, I never
stopped caring about their fate, if only because it seemed everyone
was bound to end in a bad way, and I wanted to see how it happened'.
While the Denver Post found it 'stunning and unrelenting'.
But these views were largely in the minority, with the bad vibe
being continued by the New York Post, which opined that
'In the Cut is what Hollywood calls a 'tweener,' attempting the
difficult feat of being both an art film and a commercial thriller
- but failing at both'.
Similarly negative was Slant Magazine, which dismissed
it as 'basically a sadistic potboiler with a strident post-feminist
While the Washington Post found it 'more of an intriguing
project than a satisfying experience'.
And the Chicago Sun-Times concludes this overview, with
the view that 'all of this is well done, and yet the movie is
kind of a shambles. The key supporting characters are awkwardly
used, as if the movie thinks it ought to have them but doesn't